How to make the change to a Vegan Makeup bag and Bathroom Cabinet this Veganuary

When I went vegan, I found the change to a vegan diet much easier than how to make the change to a vegan makeup bag and bathroom cabinet. Food is clearly labelled, even if it doesn’t state vegan on the packaging a quick check of the ingredients will confirm whether it is vegan friendly or not.

Beauty products are a much more complicated process due to there being various factors that need to be researched so there are four main questions to think about:

Does the product contain animal ingredients such as Beeswax, Lanolin etc.?

Is the product tested on animals?

Is the company owned by a non ethical parent company?

Does the company sell in China?

Sadly I don’t think it’s a simple answer to this question and that is why a lot of people are confused when it comes to labelling and I think the current level of dishonesty in a lot of the beauty industry does not help with this. As you can imagine just to buy a tube of toothpaste you could be googling answers for some time!

I am going to give some personal advice on how to get the answer to all these questions. There might be other suggestions or solutions that others would make but this is my point of view.



This can be simply verified just looking at the ingredients label. Animal ingredients frequently found in beauty products are:

Lanolin (oil from sheep’s wool)
Mink hair (there is no way to collect fur from an animal without harming them!) and many more.

Once you start looking into ingredients you will be amazed at how often animal ingredients are used. In my opinion they are so unjustified too, for example fish scales are often added to nail polishes to make the nail polish shiny but this can so easily be achieved with natural ingredients. However in the case of the nail polish you very rarely see an ingredients list on nail polishes and you would certainly never see fish scales listed if there were ingredients! What you would see is an ingredient listed as pearl or guanine instead of fish scales. To help when it comes to non vegan ingredients we released a blog which lists the most commonly found animal ingredients in products –


The answer to this question is so complicated is because in China it is law that beauty products are tested on animals and in the UK we generally do not test. However, for me I will not buy products that are tested on animals anywhere in the world. This can be easily verified online whether a company sells in China. The law has recently changed in China where companies no longer need to test but this hasn’t come into effect yet and between us I will believe that when I see it!

What I have found is that a lot of companies in the UK often claim to be cruelty free and are not, they may not test in the UK but they either test in China or pay other companies to knowingly test the ingredients that go into their products. I know a lot of the big beauty brands have adverts that say how they are cruelty free when they do test, just by one of the other means!

A lot of the women who work on beauty counters often do not know the truth about their brands animal testing status, I have had so many women tell me a company doesn’t test on animals when I know they do. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think these people are lying, I just think that they are told something by their corporate office and they take that as fact rather than researching what actually happens.


I also consider myself an ethical vegan. I would not purchase products that are owned by a company that tests on animals. Sadly there are a number of vegan brands out there that have sold out to animal testing conglomerates, one of the most famous of these is when the Body Shop sold out to Loreal (The business was sold on again a few years after this, you can can find lots about this online and make up your own mind as to the current ethical status of the business). I am not going to list here which parent companies test on animals but if you would like further information on this please do not hesitate to contact us!



To make this a little easier there are a number of companies that provide certifications for products that verify a company’s status which can help find vegan and cruelty free products:

Vegan Society – if a product has a vegan society logo it means that the product doesn’t contain any animal ingredients AND is cruelty free.
Cruelty free international – this product is cruelty free but not necessarily vegan as well.


So maybe you have read this far and you’re doing Veganuary and are ready to start veganising your beauty regime. The first thing I would add is that I would never suggest throwing out perfectly good products to replace them with vegan products, it’s a total waste of money, these products will just end up in landfill and animals will have died to produce them, so you may as well use them up! I would suggest starting by replacing items as they run out, I know that this can take years but at least the waste is kept to a minimum and it means that you don’t have to spend a small fortune all at once!

There are a lot of vegan friendly and cruelty free brands out there but depending on what your skin type is, your budget or your requirements from a product I would not like to recommend any specific items. There are lots of Facebook pages where people discuss beauty products and that is a good place to start. Alternatively, there are some great resources and bloggers out there, my personal 3 favourites are:

Vegan Beauty Girl – UK.
Em-j makeup artist – UK
Logical Harmony – USA (she has a list of which brands are vegan and cruelty free on her website and it is so helpful)


We can offer recommendations if you would like some help choosing products for what you would like, please either email or DM us via Social media if you would like some help.

It really should not be this complicated to buy truly vegan and cruelty free products, this is another reason I set up Greener Beauty. I believed there was an easier way. We as a company check all the labels, ingredients, cruelty free status etc so you don’t have to spend all your time doing research!


Greener Beauty Vic

Vic is the founder and director of Greener Beauty. She is an ethical vegan and a professional makeup artist, beautician and holistic therapist. To get in touch with any question you can contact Vic at or via any of the Greener Beauty social media channels.


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